The RFL congratulates all involved in making the inaugural Women's Rugby League Nines at Victoria Park in Warrington a huge success.
Twenty teams played a total of 30 matches in a celebration of the development of the Womenâ€™s and Girls' game which stretched well beyond the Betfred Women's Super League.
Les Deesses Catalanes - the womenâ€™s team from the Catalans Dragons - won all three of their games, including claiming the notable scalp of Wigan Warriors, to secure their place in the Nines Finals Day at Salfordâ€™s AJ Bell Stadium on Sunday, July 24.
Cardiff Demons and London Broncos underlined the quality of players who have been attracted to the sport since the introduction of the Betfred Women's Super League South last year, each winning two of their three matches - although they were denied Finals places by York City Knights and Leeds Rhinos respectively.
Bristol Golden Ferns had a tough draw against St Helens, Warrington Wolves and Barrow Raiders, with a young Saints team earning the Finals spot on points difference after opening with a 17-17 draw against the Wolves.
Salford Red Devils also won two out of three to add to the feelgood factor since they launched a first Women's team this winter, while Hull FC, Leigh Miners Rangers and Oulton Raidettes all represented their clubs with credit - although Huddersfield Giants showed their BWSL pedigree to seal the fifth Finals spot with victories over Salford, Oulton and Castleford Tigers.
But the day was about much more than the matches on the field, with a number of off-field presentations by superstars of the women's game, and the England Women's Head Coach Craig Richards an interested spectator.
Thomas Brindle, the RFL's Head of Growth and BWSL General Manager, said: "We wanted this to be a unique Rugby League occasion to celebrate the progress that has been made in Womenâ€™s and Girls' Rugby League in recent years, despite the interruption caused by Covid in 2020 - I think everyone involved should be congratulated for playing their part.
"We've seen some great rugby on the field, with teams from France and Wales adding so much to the event, but I hope the crowd of around 1,000 people who attended for free, whether as players, officials, parents or spectators, will have enjoyed the atmosphere off the field just as much.
"Since joining the RFL as our womenâ€™s and girls development manager, Jodie Cunningham has been passionate about inspiring the next generation - and that was the purpose of the inspiration sessions we ran as part of the Nines festival. Thanks are also due to the players, coaches and media who supported these sessions.
"Warrington Wolves Foundation were generous hosts and Victoria Park is an ideal facility to stage an event like this, after the extensive redevelopment thanks to the CreatedBy funding secured by the RFL and RLWC2021 - and it was great to have the three World Cup trophies on show as we all look forward to those tournaments at the end of the season.
"But there's a lot more to come before then, with the Betfred Womenâ€™s Challenge Cup Final between St Helens and Leeds Rhinos at Elland Road next Saturday â€“ live on BBC2, although weâ€™d love as many people as possible who support Womenâ€™s and Girlsâ€™ Rugby League to come to the ground to provide a fitting occasion for our brilliant athletes.
"And the Betfred Womenâ€™s Super League kicks off the following weekend to run through the summer, with a break for the Mid-Season International between England and France back in Warrington - at the Halliwell Jones Stadium - in June."
Winners - St Helens
- Bristol Golden Ferns 4-24 Barrow Raiders
- Warrington Wolves 17-17 St Helens
- Bristol Golden Ferns 0-29 Warrington
- St Helens 29-0 Barrow
- Bristol Golden Ferns 0-40 St Helens
- Barrow 4-14 Warrington
Winners Leeds Rhinos
- London Broncos 27-4 Warrington Lunas
- Featherstone Rovers 0-36 Leeds Rhinos
- London Broncos 15-8 Featherstone Rovers
- Leeds Rhinos 32-0 Warrington Lunas
- London Broncos 4-18 Leeds Rhinos
- Warrington Lunas 0-51 Featherstone Rovers
Winners Catalans Dragons
- Hull FC 0-35 Catalans Dragons
- Wakefield Trinity 0-33 Wigan Warriors
- Hull FC 10-25 Wakefield Trinity
- Wigan Warriors 10-18 Catalans Dragons
- Hull FC 0-30 Wigan Warriors
- Catalans Dragons 33-4 Wakefield Trinity
Winners - Huddersfield Giants
- Oulton Raidettes 21-31 Salford Red Devils
- Huddersfield Giants 31-6 Castleford Tigers
- Oulton Raidettes 11-25 Huddersfield Giants
- Castleford Tigers 4-26 Salford Red Devils
- Oulton Raidettes 12-4 Castleford Tigers
- Salford Red Devils 14-24 Huddersfield Giants
Winners - York City Knights
- Cardiff Demons 19-4 Leigh Miners Rangers
- Bradford Bulls 0-26 York City Knights
- Cardiff Demons 29-4 Bradford Bulls
- York City Knights 8-0 Leigh Miners Rangers
- Cardiff Demons 0-26 York City Knights
- Leigh Miners Rangers 8-12 Bradford Bulls
Women's Rugby League Nines Finalists:
- Catalans Dragons
- York City Knights
- Leeds Rhinos
- Huddersfield Giants
- St Helens
- Wildcard Team TBC